WHO: Jessica Leavens, Professional Development Coordinator for the Museums Association of Saskatchewan. WHERE: Hanging out at home felting. CLOTHES: Purple Lilikoi t-shirt, $60, Verve (2124 Robinson St.); Mavi jeans, Havik (1775 Scarth St.). ACCESSORIES: Leather cuff, $20, Catalyst Reaction (Victoria, BC); knit socks, gift from sister; legwarmers, Ardene; Dolce and Gabbana glasses, Hakim Optical (1010 Pasqua St.) HAIR: Nickie Mader (private stylist) and Ashton at Vrata (1950 Angus St.)
Jessica, who moved to Regina from Victoria last year, has been enjoying the cold (yes, cold) prairie landscape and our vibrant culture (yes, vibrant). She recently joined a craft circle, and has been newly introduced to felting, which she has dove right into creating. With work, she will be busy this year, visiting all the little towns that make up Saskatchewan, which she is pretty excited about. Honestly, with the thumbs up she gives our little province, I think Jessica could probably tell you more about Saskatchewan, than someone who has lived here all their life.
What are the differences you have noticed between West Coast and Prairie cultures? I think every place takes a little bit to move into and see what is going on. It has taken me a while to find out where all the eco-friendly stores are here in Regina, and locally grown food, but they are still here. One thing I really like about Regina, is that there is so much arts, culture and heritage going on here and throughout the province. It is very accessible. It is culturally diverse and interesting. You can go to museums and galleries for free! You can't do that in a lot of other places.
What is your take on fashion? I think clothes are a necessity. Especially in this cold weather! When I buy clothes I really try to think about where they came from and support locally made thing, artists and shops. If I can find clothes that are organic or sustainable, I try to go with that.
For readers who are interested in buying more eco-friendly clothing, can you suggest any? There are some really good places here. Verve is really good, and has locally made. Pu has some really nice stuff. Seed is a really great place to find locally made accessories. And Betsy to shop online.
Tell me about the felting. Felting is addictive and so much fun. You can sit for three hours, and make a cat. Or whatever you want!
Would you ever try felting something to wear? I don't know about making a whole outfit, but my sister did buy me a broach which was felted and stitched.
What is one thing that you put on that makes you strut your stuff? I like a short skirt and boots once in a while. Or my toque.
Interview and photography by Carey Shaw for prairie dog